The following biographies, recent photos and contact information belong to the the members of 3rd Platoon "G" Company, 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment of the 2nd Marine Division's Fleet Marine Force at Camp LeJeune, North Carolina taking part in the U.S. Navy's Solant Amity I Cruise to South America and Africa, from November 1960 through April of 1961. This page contains biographies of members with last names beginning with G-Z. Others are found at A-F.

Peter A. Greco : Born in 1938, I was raised and joined the Corps in Utica, New York.
Sworn in on 3/2/58, I graduated with Parris Island Platoon 127-58 and, after ITR at Camp Geiger, was assigned, first, to 2nd Marine infantry. With the implementation of controlled input I found myself thereafter being sent to G-2-6, where I remained until leaving the Corps on 3/1/62 as an E-4. So, except for boot camp and ITR, my four year active duty stint was all infantry.

It didn't take long to get back into the swing of things In New York. I found myself in the construction industry.
Before too long I was a heavy equipment [ mostly bulldozer and backhoe] operator with the Operating Engineers and continued to do so until retiring in 1995.

In 1968, I married Marie and we had two children, both of whom are well. One day, perhaps, there will be grandchildren. Marie passed away in 2002.
I spend most of my time in Florida where I commonly fish five days out of every week and then spend a few months each year in the Utica area, where I might find myself hunting as far north as Canada.
Someone has to except the challenges in life, right?

It has been a lot of years since we last saw one another and I couldn't have been more surprised or pleased when hearing "blast from the past" Trevor Davies on the phone. To get a clearer idea of what I've re-associated myself with, Trevor told me to check out the Solant Amity website. And, I will when next I visit my local library.
I gave up my computer a few years back, thus I've no email address. So, if you've a mind to, give me a call at [ Cell Phone] (315) 272-9928 or drop me a line at 1050 Plymouth Rock Drive, Naples, FL 34110.
I'll be back at the Florida hacienda within a few days, but for now: Semper fi from Utica.


Paul Heston: Born in 1942, I was raised and joined the Corps out of the small town of Uhrichville, Ohio.
Sworn in on 4/1/59 and bussed off to South Carolina's USMC's Recruit Training Center for a mind readjustment, I graduated with Parris Island Platoon 218 and, like all others of the time, did a month long gig at Camp Geiger's Infantry Training Regiment. Thereafter, I was immediately assigned to G-2-6 for a prospective 30 month stint as part of Controlled "though shall not escape" Input. I was to remain with "G" Company for the entire time I was with the infantry. Thereafter, I extended by 18 months my active duty stint, attended Embassy School, was assigned to Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic and left the Corps in '65 as an E5 Sergeant. It was time to move on with the rest of my life.
Starting first in Washington, DC I worked for about three years in sales, first with Friden Inc. and their various calculators and business machines and then Pitney Bowes and their lucrative government contracting enterprises. Thereafter, in moving to Sacramento, CA I began a three decade long association and career with the semi-conductor industry culminating in Denver, Colorado in 1998.
Over those same years, I had married and was fortunate enough to have two children--one boy/one gal--that have provided me with three wonderful grand children.
I've since divorced and remarried, making a new life in Idaho for myself and wife, Melody...whom I'd known and remained in contact with since I was fourteen. Though, truth be known and winters here being something "special," we may before long be making a move to a climate a bit more moderate. We'll see.
A good many years have passed since those days and nights of discipline, spit-shined shoes and boots, long marches and often uncomfortable surroundings; as well as the many-many-many places of interest and their cultures around the world visited and worked in that few Americans, then or now, get to see in their entire lifetimes.
Those few and so very formative years in my life had, for a hundred reasons, enormous impact. And if more of us thought about it, they'd come to the same conclusion. From boot camp and it trials; the help of a Gunny Matthews in seeing to it that newly assigned members of his platoon took the GED exams; the coming upon unmarked and alleged "cargo ships" refueling soviet subs while in route, aboard the destroyer USS Gearing, to what was probably the first terrorist act of piracy in the 20th Century; the relentless demand of personal discipline and cohesiveness; and--in my case--the finishing affects of Embassy School: All of it...training, education, danger, team effort, discipline, self-respect...contributed to what we've done with our lives.
I'm not one inclined to get involved with a great deal of emailing but would always appreciate hearing from a Marine with whom I've served. I can be reached at 1-330-365-1877. Semper fi, Paul.


John Hynes: [Now Deceased] Efforts to find John produced the following results. Upon leaving the Corps, John joined the New York City Police Department on October 14th, 1963. He was assigned to the 23rd Precinct and had on a number of occasions spoken with George Bitsoli, while on duty in the vicinity of where George had worked.

John had a Midtown beat near the mid-town-eastside Kips Bay Theater I worked at on East 38th Street near 2nd Avenue.
Often, especially on cold nights, he would come in and have coffee to warm up while taking his allotted break. When I was busy he would wait in the house auditorium or lobby. I enjoyed chatting with him, especially if the nights were slow and business was doing poorly. I really enjoyed having his GUN around. !!!
But, in addition to the secure atmosphere he provided, I enjoyed the conversation about the "old days" in the Barracks and our banter there.
My recollection of John was that he was always a true Buddy, always friendly and helpful. Our times shared in the Corps and later were enjoyable.
Luckily, when I transferred to Brick Town New Jersey to manage a theater there, across the road was a State Troopers barracks. Again I felt reassured, and attempting to replace the feeling of added security of John's presence, I always made sure the Troopers had plenty of passes.
Sometime afterwards, I heard that John had perished in an auto accident on the Tri-Borough Bridge. I don't think he was working or in a pursuit. Rather, I was lead to believe he was off duty and riding with a few other folks when the accident occurred.

NYPD records indicate that John died while off duty, on May 21, 1972.
On 19Apr06, George Bitsoli received a phone call from John's son. Subsequent email communications furnished the following additional information about the 3rd Platoon's John Hynes.
He is survived by two sons: 1) John (Jr.), a 38 year old detective with the Pelham Police Department who, with his wife of ten years and two daughters had lived in Pelham, New York; 2) another son, now 36, living in Pennsylvania near Penn State; and 3) his former wife, now remarried.
"I have red hair like my dad and was but 4 years old when dad died in an auto accident when coming home from work in 1972
.
"I will look for pictures of my father so I can send them to you.
"I would like to hear any stories from his former Marine buddies. Please send them to detppd@aol.com .
"I'm really glad that I found your website."


[Editor's note:
As of now, those closest to John Sr. have not been found. If you are one of them, PLEASE reach out to John's son AND drop me a note as I'd like to add you name to our contact list.
In the meantime: Semper fi to all and may the soul of John Hynes "Rest in peace."


Peter M. Kalesnick: Now, here's a case of enormous effort to find one of us who appears determined to remain "out of touch." Most perplexing however is "Peter K's" apparent pride in having been a Marine, that he retired as a Sergeant Major, that he makes no effort to secrete his military service, that he spent 2 1/2 formative years of his life with the many of G-2-6 and the Solant Amity contingent; YET, over the better part of a decade, he has failed to acknowledge our efforts to contact him.
Some years back, we received an email from someone wanting "if available, a better photograph" of Pete than the miniature displayed on the website. They wanted a full sized version so they might give it to him for a, then pending, birthday. We sent what we had and asked for Pete's address. That person never responded nor did our alleged Sergeant Major ever reach out. A search of the internet at the time provided a suspected address for our target. He was sent a letter and a self-addressed postcard, containing information about the Solant Amity website. The postcard was never returned. He, nor anyone else knowing him, ever again reached out with an email.
More recently, in 2014, Joe Teklits set his mind to finding a lead and prompted me to follow-up on it. That lead eventually took me to other internet references and some Facebook traces of him. A phone number was found but repeated effort to reach him provided nothing more than a message saying something about the "message box is, at this time, full." Repeated efforts over a two week period made it clear to me that our retired "Sergeant Major" isn't very organized OR he has no real interest in being found.
Thus, given what we believe is "Peter K"s wish to remain a semi-riddle, everything learned about the man is provided below except for what is believed his address, a picture of that home and his phone number.


Pvt. "Peter K" - PISC

Wife: Vickie L. Kalesnick

The photos are of Peter and his wife Vickie.
Clearly, SgtMaj Kalesnick has bulked up over the more than five decades since we'd last seen him.
Born 3April42, he's moved around over the years and lived in Colorado, Maine, Kentucky and Califonia...at the very least.
He did his bootcamp stint at Parris Island beginning circa April of '59, he was then barely 17.
I remember his pride at a being a Marine L/Cpl and his having some salty EGL's that belonged to his dad.

You "done good" Sergeant Major Kalesnick.

But, reach out and fill in the blanks for us.


Latter day "Peter K"

I ask that anyone knowing of him or parts of his career, please drop me a line at edshea@sageauthoring.com.
Semper fi.


Kenneth R. Kollai: born in 1940 and raised in Parma, Ohio. My USMC active duty began 5 April 1959 with Platoon 320, Parris Island, South Carolina. Thereafter, I was assigned to the Infantry Training Regiment at Camp Geiger, North Carolina for a month and then proceeded to my first infantry assignment with "F" Company, 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment of the 2nd Marine Division's Fleet Marine Force [FMF ] at Camp LeJeune, North Carolina.
About 15 months later, I was reassigned to "G" Company, 2nd battalion, 6th Marines for the Solant Amity I Cruise and remained with that unit — getting married in November of 1961 — until finishing my required 30 month controlled input stint with the infantry around March of 1962. Thereafter, I was then reassigned to the 8th Communication Battalion and finished up my four years of active duty, being Honorably Discharged as a Lance Corporal, in April 1963.
Returning to my home town in Ohio, I soon went to work for Alcoa in the company's Millwright Apprenticeship Program and, after four years, obtained my Journeyman's card and remained with Alcoa until 1974, when I moved to Fort Myers, Florida.

There, I immediately took a job at John Deere construction equipment dealership as a field service technician and functioned in that capacity for the next 20 years. Over the many years since, I progressed first to shop foreman and, for the past few years, I have been the service manager for the dealership's facility.
My wife, Charlotte, and I have remained married for these past 40 years. We have 2 sons named Dale and Jim, as well as 3 wonderful grandchildren: Jennifer 15, Kyle 10, Donald 6 years of age.
Seeing this site and all the names from our outfit brings back a lot of memories that I would not trade for anything in the world. It fact, in seems that with each passing year the images seem to grow clearer and clearer. Why is it, do you suppose, that happens??
Semper Fi.
My email address is krk271@centurylink.net


Robert A. Lane: Now DECEASED was born 7/4/40 and entered the Marine Corps in 1959. Volunteering for the Solant Amity Cruise in 1960, Bob left the Corps in 1963.
Subsequently, he was married and had three children. Two of those children are still alive. One lives in Maine, the other in Utah.
He had, over the many years since we last saw him, engaged in a number of businesses while living in Maine. He was toward the end of his life working in the computer service related industry.
He had had open heart surgery as early as 1981 but, ultimately, succumbed to a heart attack on June 30th, 2001 in South Portland, Maine.
May his soul "Rest in peace."


John R. Lemongelli: Now DECEASED was born 1938 and raised in Islam, New Jersey.He entered the Marine Corps in September of 1958 and was assigned to "F" Company, 2nd Battalion, 6th Marines in December of that same year.
Sometime in October of 1961, he volunteered for and was reassigned to "G" Company 2/6 just prior to the unit proceeding on the Solant Amity I cruise.
After existing the Corps, he worked at various things for a few years, until beginning work for Rutgers University in New Jersey.
He and his wife, Helen, had been married for greater than forty years. "We have four children and nine grand-children…all of whom I'm very proudl" said John.
"Retiring in 2000, after 33 years with Rutgers, I'm enjoying the opportunity to benefit from those many years of labor.
To say the least, learning of the efforts to find me and others with whom we spent so much 'Old Corps' time was a surprise. It was great to learn of their well-being and I look forward to an opportunity for us all to come together in the near future."
John died on 14May13.


James J. McCarthy : born 1941 and raised in Philadelphia, PA, I joined the Corps on 17Apr59 and, after finishing boot camp with Platoon 121- 59 at Parris Island, was assigned to "G" Company, 2nd Battalion of the 6th Marines for the duration of my time at Camp Lejeune.
With but a year of required active duty time remaining in 1962, I grabbed a few extra months enlistment in order to find an assignment out of the North Carolina area. The typically obliging Marine Corps then sent me to 1st Recon on Okinawa. By March of 1963, however, there was an ongoing "early release" program afoot and the Corps gave me my walking papers around the same time I might have received them had I not requested an extension.
Cast into the world of the working classes, I was within a year married and driving for the Schmidt's Brewery, followed by a stint with Quaker City and finally the Miller Corporation.
My wife, Ann, and I have three really wonderful children: Kevin, Steven and Kelly Ann. And, since I'm announcing some of the brighter highlights in my life, after 41 years in harness I retired on 2Dec05. Both achievements rate a high volumed "OooRAH!"
It was my daughter that first found the Solant Amity website and I'm so very pleased that she did, as the Solant Amity cruise provided an adventure filled with memories that have lasted a lifetime. I'm so glad that I was part of it and was able to share the time, experiences and the company of so many good men.
Semper fi to you all.


Richard S. McGibbeny: born 1942 in Pittsburgh. At age 7, with my mother and sister, I moved to Indiana and at 15 moved again to my father's place in Florida, from whence I joined the Corps on 4/19/59. The next three fine spring and summer months my mail went to Platoon 121, Parris Island, South Carolina and for a month thereafter to the Infantry Training Regiment at Camp Geiger in North Carolina. Then, following a short bus ride, I was assigned "just around the corner" to "G" Company, 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, FMF, Camp LeJeune, North Carolina.
Nearly the first half of the 30 months of Controlled Input I spent in "G" company was spent doing what the entire 2nd Battalion was required to do: three month stints in the Caribbean or six months in the Mediterranean protecting the mainland from marauding forces of the evil empire and, otherwise, just "hang out" in Viegues, PR practicing live fire operations and putting out brush fires started by same. Then came "G" Company's opportunity to make the Solant Amity I Cruise, solo to South America and Africa. And with that chance came my own to see a greater part of the world than most get to see; help capture a "pirate, terrorist-patriot" named Henrique Galvao off the cost of Recife, Brazil; get myself tattooed in Cape Town, South Africa under circumstances I still can't remember, and serve as part of a destroyer crew for six weeks aboard the US S. Gearing, DD-710.
All and all, it made for a great time.
After leaving the 6th Marines, I shipped over for two more years and spent my remaining service time with the 2nd Tank Battalion's Motor Transport unit. Using the shipping over to buy myself a body shop in Jacksonville in 1963, I continued to own and operate it even after leaving the Marine Corps in April of 1965. As life and good fortune would have it, six days after exiting USMC, my entire platoon was shipped to Vietnam. However, commensurate with the nation's ever greater buildup in Nam, Jacksonville became something of a ghost town. With its demise went virtually any chance of the business's continued success. So, I returned to one of those places of my "formative" years, Florida.
After spending most of the next 25 years there, in the dairy industry, I returned once more to North Carolina in 1989 and have been here ever since. More recently, I've been working for Frito Lay, so every time you buy a bag of potato chips, remember your helping this old jarhead's profit sharing plan.
Married for the second time, 21 years ago this coming August, my wife Diana and I have six children. I've two sons and daughters while Diana has a son and daughter, all from previous marriages. Then there are the 16 grandchildren, three great-grandchildren as well as the one on the way.
I enjoy old cars and have some long range plans of restoring a 1979 Firebird Formula, "just sittin' on the property." Three years away from retirement, D
iana and I plan to see something of the country in a 31 foot fifth wheel trailer and rig to match. We really looking forward to it all but, like most Americans today, we're trying to cope with the events of September 11th. A big Semper Fi to you all. My email address is: ______________________
[EDITOR'S NOTE:In August of 2013, efforts to contact Dick by phone, email and personal letter failed. Should Dick, a friend or family member be able to help us reconnect with him please contact edshea@solantamity.com]

James J. McQuaid: Born in 1940 and raised in Massachusetts, he did his stint at Parris Island, ITR at Camp Geiger and was assigned by September '59 to the 6th Marines at Camp Lejeune where he came to serve with G-2-6 during Solant Amity I and beyond.
Leaving the Corps in '63, he served with a Massachusett's municipal Fire Department beginning in March '64 and retired therefrom on 17July05: one very long and rewarding career.
We learned that he has been married for most of that time, has four children and is making the most of his retirement.
Beyond that Jim has chosen to maintain his privacy and those, such as myself, having only the fondest memories of Jim, wish him well in his retirement pursuits.
Should you, as a former member of G-2-6 only, have an interest in contacting him, please send any inquiries to this site's webmaster
, who will forward your request to him.


Photo is all we've got at this time
.


Roland Craig Peyton: Born in 1940 in Washington, DC where I was, at the age of one and in anticipation of the eventual DC crime wave, hurriedly moved to Saint Petersburg, Florida where I was raised and joined the Marine Corps in August of 1958. This was a no-brainer, written-in-the-stars moment as my father was a Marine in the Spanish American War. "How might that have been," you ask. Well, my father was 63 and my mother was 23 (yes, 23) when I was born! This explains why I'm still around and feel like 50. Unfortunately, my mom died when I was eight and dad died, at 81, when I was in boot camp at Parris Island.
After Parris Island, Platoon 330, I finished ITR at Camp Geiger and was assigned to G-2-6 in the fall of that same year and...after extending my enlistment to take part in the Solant Amity episode...remained with it until transferred to Quantico in 1962 to keep track of the Officer's Club alcohol supply.
Leaving the Corps, I returned to the west coast of Florida and began the long process of developing skills used in the commercial lighting end of the Electrical Construction industry.
Married in 1979, my wife and I have two daughters and four grand-children, all of whom are going to get a big kick out of learning what their grandfather did back in the last century. We just celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary - Boy what a ride.
In 1987 we had the opportunity to move to Richmond, Virginia and start our own business, Illumination Concepts and Sales. My wife, Linda, and I sold the business in 2003 and I have been retired since. She, however being much younger than I (the apple doesn't fall far from the tree) decided to continue her education and became an RN. To this day I am still a "kept man".
The three and one-half years in the Corps were some of the best years I ever had. To explain, I enlisted for three years and extended 6 months for the Solant Amity cruise. A decision I never regretted. Especially, since I became an international hero when participating in the capture of "Terrorist-Hijacker-Pirate" Henrique Galveo on the Santa Maria. Those of you who were with me on the Gearing will fondly remember that auspicious occasion.
Another event which comes to mind as I'm writing this occurred when I was part of the rescue team that went up the Congo river to help evacuate some badly shot-up soldiers from the jungle. They had been ambushed. Time has faded the details; but we were on some sort of ship (a flat-bottomed affair) that carefully wound its way into a narrow waterway, with land close-by to both port-and-starboard, lowered a gangplank to the shore and and watched as wounded troops slid from the tree-line, formed a column and walk aboard. Whether they were French mercenaries or part of the UN forces I cannot recollect. BUT, I do recall just how emaciated and badly injured many of them were from apparent dysentery or worse, and burns, as well as open and infected puncture wounds of various sorts. Then, too, I remember that were carrying lots and lots of money in their overflowing knapsacks, as well as their blouse and trouser pockets.
One can only assume that it was not pre-WWII German Reichsmarks they'd found along some stretch of Congo road nor was it likely that they had received it from their unit payroll officer...at least, not voluntarily.
Lastly, I REALLY liked being in the Corps. INDEED, had it not been for an unfortunate run-in with a Board of Summary Court-martial for a brief AWOL stunt, I'm sure I would have stayed in. However, knowing that the court martial "stigma" would never leave my file, I opted to return to civilian life. Which, i
n retrospect, may have saved my life and family tree as, in staying in, I likely would have found myself in Nam and unfortunate enough to not return. So instead of reading this wonderful little biography, you would be reading an obituary account.
So many years, so much wine and so many "good" women. Wow! Was...and is...it not great to be Marine?
Reach out and drop me a line at rcraigpeyton@msn.com, I'd love to hear from you.
"SEMPER FI" -- Craig or Roland or just RC - whatever fits.


Meredith T. Phillips: Born 1941 and raised in the area of Knoxville, Tennessee I joined the Marine Corps on April 15, 1959. Graduating with Parris Island Platoon 59-121, I and what must have been at least another 500 "new" Marines that month proceeded to Camp Geiger's Infantry Training Regiment for a month before being assigned to the 2nd Marine Division's 6th Regiment. There I was to become part of "G" Company of the 2nd Battalion, where I would remain until 1962 when reassigned to Shore Party and the Combat Engineering unit, with a new functioning MOS of 1380. Almost unbelievably, after so long a stint as an infantryman, I found that in the few months remaining of my four year enlistment, I was to return not once but three more times to a place we all new so very well, Vieques. It seemed as though I just couldn't stay away from the heat, rolling hills, kunai grass and periodic spraying of DDT. Then, shortly before my long anticipated exit date, I tore up my knee and found my tour extended until the knee was functional enough for me to move back into civilian life in May of 1963.
Well, then life began anew and I returned to Tennessee for about six months before proceeding west to Kal-i-for-nia, where I remain to this date. Though I have moved around a few times. I was first in Venice, CA where I worked as an heavy equipment operator for Yates & Wright Construction. Three years later, I began working for an electronics systems manufacturer where I rose to foreman and, perhaps more importantly, met my "to be and still" wife Emily, whom I married on April 20th of 1967. In November of '67, I once again changed working horses. This time I was to work in a machine shop [Stevelyn Machines] where I would develop the lathe operation to machinist, quality control and management skills that would carrying me forward for the rest of my working career. In 1991, Stevelyn's folded and I found work in still another machine shop, which I remained with until 2000 when I fell on the operations floor and badly injured my spine. Originally on disability and going bunkers at home, I eventually opted to take on a new and less physically demanding job with the school district.
Over the years, I've raised and loved three sons: Nat and John, Emily's by nature and a previous marriage and mine by nurture, and then Lance of our own union. They, in turn have furnished Emily and I with six grand-children [ three gals and guys] and two OUTSTANDING grand-daughters. Life IS good.
Those four years back in the last century had an enormous impact on my life. Some may not grasp what those years of up close and personal exposure to the cultures and communities of other nations in the Caribbean, Africa, South America and Europe had on our perspectives of the world and the many advantages we as Americans really have...but I do. Some may not recognize what those years of discipline, concern for a mission and loyalty to something bigger than ourselves...but I do. Some may not have found themselves, thinking 'bout those days and fellow Marines of yore while shaving before mirror...but I do.
And, Solant Amity? Hey, I remember having a priest wake me up in a Recife church on Christmas day, 1960...and not knowing how I'd gotten there, only to give the priest a donation and leave the church for still more revelry. I remember encountering and coming to near blows with the lunatic fringe of the pro-Castro movement while trying to party in Tenerife, in the Canary Island. And how about being observed and assisted by a Spanish police officer in the "Only God knows where" outskirts of Cadiz, Spain who, on his motor-scooter, drove me to the Pay-Pay Club and "civilization?" And Cape Town, South Africa!!!! Is anyone EVER going to forget that place? I still remember running through the surf of the Indian ocean, with rolled up trouser legs, half-assedly wondering whether it would feel any different from the waters of the Atlantic Ocean...a mile and a half away. In short what was there NOT to like?
I'm so glad to find myself back in the fold
with which I was so comfortable a half-century ago.
Please, send your email to _______________ or call me at 1-(000) 000-0000. And, lastly, SEMPER FI.
[EDITOR'S NOTE:In August of 2013, efforts to contact Mat by phone, email and personal letter failed. Should Mat, a friend or family member can help us reconnect with him please contact edshea@solantamity.com ]


Paul R. Saphore : Born 1935 and raised in Pennsylvania along with thirteen brothers and two sisters, I entered the Marine Corps out of Harrisburg, PA in June of 1958 and was first assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marines. I was next sent to "H" Company of the 6th Marines. Then, just prior to Solant Amity, I once again transferred to "G" Company for the next 15 months or so. After which, with not much time remaining on my enlistment, I was lastly assigned to Camp Lejeune's Headquarters Unit as part of the base's military police force.
Leaving the Corps, I returned to Pennsylvania and, after a time, to the outfit
I'd worked for before entering the service...Willcox Forge in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. I remained with Willcox, eventually retiring in 1991 at 56 years of age and after 35 years with the company.
Though coming close over those many years, I've never married. Which may alone account in some small measure to my longevity. (:-))))
Since then I've done pretty damn much as I please. On the day Ed Shea called, for example, I was cutting up some old trees just before coming in for lunch.
A lot of years have past, for all of us, since those several months of SoLant Amity and, for most of us, those four years of being active duty Marines of the last century. I could not have been more surprised to learn of the efforts to contact we "chosen few" that spent those months together aboard the Graham County.
I've no email address but can be reached by regular mail at 1329 Church Street, Carlisle, Pennsylvania 17013
.
A big "Semper fi" to you all.


Frank Schmidtt: born 1941 and raised in Elmont, New York. My USMC active duty began on 3/11/59 with Platoon 216. Suffering from a weight problem, I was immediately sent to the "Islands" famed Motivation Platoon [ Which, should you not recall, was also know as the Fat Man's Platoon ] for an insufferable 30 days. I was then reassigned to Platoon 221 on 4/11/59 and graduated Parris Island around the end of the first week of July 1959. Like all east coast Marines of the time, I was thereafter sent to the Corps' Infantry Training Regiment [ ITR ] at Camp Geiger, North Carolina followed by an "around-the-corner"reassignment to the 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force [ FMF ], Camp LeJeune, North Carolina where something called "controlled input" was just being inaugurated.
Spending the first half of the 30 months required controlled input with "E" Company, I joined "G" Company for the Solant Amity Cruise and the remainder of my stint with the infantry. In 1962, I left the frying pan that was the grunts only to leap into the fire that was the 2nd Recon Battalion. After six months in that lash-up, I was AGAIN transferred. This time to Quantico, Virginia and "B" Company of the Schools Demonstration Troops [SDT ], functioning as part of the resistance forces used in the training of officer candidates. I remained there until being discharged in March of 1963.

Returning to New York, I worked for an auto dealership until April of 1964, when I started my 32 year-long career with the Long Island Rail Road from which I retired in June of 1996.
In 1965, I married and lived in Woodside, Queens, within one of the five boroughs that make up New York City. We bought our first house in North Babylon, New York on Long Island and moved into our second and present home in Shirley, New York...also on Long Island...in 1972. We have two children, our first, Frank, was born on 11/5/66 and three years later on 2/11/69 our daughter Kathleen was born. Neither has made the big step to the altar. In the past, we have enjoyed boating and camping, with both a motor home and trailer. And we continue to regularly travel to Clearwater, Florida, as my mother lives there.
Hearing from Ed Shea and Trevor Davies has brought back some VERY old and good memories that make me feel like a young kid again. I look forward to hearing from you OLD salts. My e-mail address is Schmidt41f@aol.com. Semper Fi


Edward J. Shea was born 1941 and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He began a four year active duty USMC enlistment on 4/7/59 with Platoon 220, Parris Island, SC. Thereafter, he proceeded to Camp Geiger in J-ville, NC for infantry training and was then assigned to the 6th Marine Regiment at Camp Lejeune.
"Initially with Echo Company, 2nd Battalion, I transferred to 'G' Company in November 1960 so I might take part in the Solant Amity I Cruise and stayed with it until reassigned to another Lejeune outfit: Able Company of the 2nd Antitank [Ontos] Battalion. I finally made L/Cpl, had my MOS changed to office poge [ that was "clerk," for those of you having a senior moment ] and received training in the only real world transferable skill the Corps provided me with in nearly three years: typing. Thirty days of 'A,S,D,F,G....'
"Later and finally, ignoring the shipping-over efforts, I left for inactive reserve duty on 4/6/63 and awaited the results of tests taken for both the police and fire departments of New York City. I wore nothing green for at least two years...not even on St. Patty's Day. Talk about post-traumatic-syndrome.
"Married five months before 'getting out,' I worked first as a sales-trainee at Johns-Mansville Corporation in Manhattan, entered Pace College in September and had my first son, Brian Timothy, by 12/22/63. I was subsequently fortunate enough to have two more sons, Kevin Michael and Sean O. [ He and I both keep the name behind the "O" a secret ] by 1969.
"With January 16th, 1965 began the most exciting period of my life...a Fire Department of New York career that would assist me in supporting a family, the opportunity to obtain two college degrees, to function as a firefighter, arson/homicide investigator [Fire Marshal ] and Lieutenant during the most strife torn period of NYC, indeed the entire nation's crime and fire related history.

"Most importantly, it gave me something that very few 'jobs' ever offer, the opportunity to extend my adolescence while pretending to be an adult.
"Functioning in my own behalf, attorney pro-se, I was divorced in 1982 and awarded custody of my three sons, the house and all related indebtedness.
"I retired from the Fire Department in 1987.
"So, between the four years in USMC and 23 years in FDNY, first the nations of the world and then the residents of New York City had 27 busy years to kill me. Both failed.
"Subsequently, I taught Scientific Arson Investigation at John Jay College in NYC and a number of community colleges on Long Island. Then, I went on to teach Chemistry of Hazardous Materials for the National Fire Academy both at its Emmitsburg, Maryland campus and around the country, finally writing a published text on Hazardous Materials Operations Site Practices, for FEMA.
"More recently? Well, having sold the house I 'won' in that divorce, I bought a small place in a Delray Beach, Florida retirement community in '02, then purchased a 37 foot Pacific Seacraft sailboat , sailed it from Fort Lauderdale to the Long Island region where I did most of my extended summer sailing thereafter, before selling it in 2010.
You just have to keep movin.' Semper fi to ya'll. My email address is: edshea@sageauthoring.com"

Ronald C. Smith: [Now Deceased] Born 12/02/41 and raised in Troy, New York. My USMC active duty began 4/11/59 with Platoon 221 on that wonder of wonders, Parris Island, South Carolina. Thereafter, I was assigned to Infantry Training Regiment [ITR], Camp Geiger, North Carolina followed by reassignment to the 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd MarDiv, FMF, Camp LeJeune, North Carolina.
Spending the first half of 30 months controlled input with "E" Company, I joined "G" Company for the Solant Amity I Cruise and the remainder of my stint with the infantry. In 1962, I left the luscious pine barrens of Camp LeJeune for the pleasures of providing security at New London, Connecticut's Naval Base until discharged.
Returning to the world, I tried to figure out how I could make a living without actually working. In pursuit of that goal, I enrolled in Northeast Broadcasting School in Boston with an eye toward some kind of announcing career. Within weeks, a job was found at WHAV in Haverhill, Mass. The rest is history, as they say. That is, a succession of jobs in radio and television which took me to Albany, New York for a time, then on to Baltimore in 1973. I was a TV anchor and reporter for WBAL-TV until 1980, when new management decided to make a change in my department by getting rid of me. We parted by "mutual consent," which is when your bosses decide you've got to go and you agree, because there's nothing much you can do about it. I then became a stockbroker for five years, which was interesting enough, but not precisely my piece of cake. (Remember the part above about "without actually working?") So, on August 5th, 1984, I began hosting a talk show on WBAL Radio (AM 1090). And happily, that stint continues to this day and—thanks to a new contract—until at least 2004.
In the nearly four decades since doffing Marine Corps duds, I've married three times and fathered four children that have, in turn, blessed me with seven grandkids.
My wife June ( she is my 3rd, and LAST spouse ) and I live in a once sleepy, now pretty bustling Baltimore bedroom community just across the state line in Pennsylvania. We busy ourselves with work and travel, having had the pleasure of many cruises and other overseas trips. I am an avid golfer (8 handicap) and spend lots of time chasing the little white ball and striving to put it in that tiny little hole in the ground.
With the exception of being confined to the USS Gearing for misbehavior in Brazil (kids will be kids), I fondly remember the SOLANT AMITY I adventure. It was a great pleasure to be among the first Fleet Marines to live aboard a destroyer since WW2. The swabbies on the Gearing were a terrific, delightfully nutty bunch.
I want to pass along a stanza from a poem entitled "Decades" written by my wife, June Ray Smith, who has acquired a reputation for being something of a local media poet laureate. It seems particularly pertinent at this stage of all our lives.
  Time flies and I with it,
the span of my life is measured
in minutes and memories.
  With sudden motion, swift movement
I spread my wings as today
becomes tomorrow,
now becomes then.

Editor's Note: Some may not remember that it was Ron who provided the shipboard entertainment and news aboard the USS Graham County during the Solant Amity cruise. After leaving the Corps, as you'll read in the following obituary provided by WBAL, he went on to become Baltimore radio's "Voice of Reason." He died December 19, 2011. He WILL be missed.
From the website of Baltimore's radio station WBAL:

Ron Smith 1941-2011

Ron Smith, WBAL’s show host who became known to generations of listeners as “The Voice of Reason” died Monday night from cancer.
He had turned 70 on December 2.
He died at his home in Shrewsbury, surrounded by his wife June and the rest of his family.
Funeral services will be private. A public memorial service will be scheduled at a later date.
Ron shared his final days with his listeners telling them “don’t mourn me."
Ron announced to his listeners on October 17 that he had been diagnosed with advanced pancreatic cancer.
He underwent treatment at Johns Hopkins' Kimmel Cancer Center, but on November 17 told listeners that he would halt his chemotherapy treatments after consulting with his doctor and his wife, June.
On November 28, Ron announced he was retiring from his on air duties because of his declining health, and that he had begun home hospice care.
Ron also wrote a weekly column for the Baltimore Sun.
In his final column last month, Smith wrote, “What is a mere individual to do? Live as sane and decent a life as you can, love your family and friends and understand that everybody is in this together. My work here is done.”
In the final days of his life, Ron received many phone calls, letters and emails from colleagues and fans.
Coach John Harbaugh of the Baltimore Ravens called Ron on his birthday and called their 30-minute phone conversation with Ron, "one of the most encouraging and motivational conversations I've ever had with anyone in my life."
Harbaugh gave Ron the game ball after the Ravens beat the Cleveland Browns Sunday, December 4.
Ron first came to Baltimore in 1973 as a reporter and anchor for WBAL-TV's "Action News."
When station management decided to "part ways" with Ron in 1980, Ron became a stockbroker.
In 1984, Ron was hired to host a talk show for WBAL Radio, where he stayed on the air until November.
Although Ron's politics leaned to the right, Ron called himself a Libertarian and was critical of both Democrats and Republicans.

Ron Smith's Official Biography

Ron Smith was born December 2, 1941 and raised in Troy, New York.
An autodidact, he interrupted his studies and joined the U.S. Marine Corps in 1959.
In 1962, he left the luscious pine barrens of Camp Lejeune for the pleasures of providing security at New London, Connecticut's Naval Base until discharged.
Returning to the world, Ron tried to figure out how he could make a living without actually working. In pursuit of that goal, he enrolled in Northeast Broadcasting School in Boston with an eye toward some kind of announcing career. Within weeks, a job was found at WHAV in Haverhill, Mass. The rest is history, as they say.
That is, a succession of jobs in radio and television which took him to Albany, New York for a time, then on to Baltimore in 1973. Ron was a TV anchor and reporter for WBAL-TV until 1980, when new management decided to make a change in his department by getting rid of him.
They parted by “mutual consent,” which is when your bosses decided you’ve got to go and you agree there’s nothing much you can do about it. He became a stockbroker for five years, which was interesting enough, but not precisely his “piece of cake”. (Remember the part above about “without actually working?”)
August 5th, 1984, he began hosting a talk show on WBAL Radio (AM 1090).

Often at odds with the Baltimore Sun, Ron was surprised when the paper asked him to join The Sun as a columnist. Beginning August 2008, Ron penned a weekly column which appeared on Fridays.
He and his wife June, affectionately known as “Mrs. Reason” – he was, after all, The Voice of Reason, lived in a once sleepy, now a bustling Baltimore bedroom community just across the Maryland state line in Pennsylvania.
They busied themselves with work and travel, having had the pleasure of many cruises and other overseas trip, and the company of their blended family of five children and seven grandchildren.
Ron was an avid golfer and spent lots of time chasing the little white ball and striving to put it in that tiny little hole in the ground.
About talk radio, Ron said, “Whatever you talk about, someone out there knows more than you do.” But he was never at a loss for words, claiming that he “swallowed a lexicon as a child and had been spitting it out, word by word by word, ever since.”

May his soul rest in peace....


Joseph J. Teklits: Born 1940 in Manhattan [Da' Big Apple], New York City, New York I began USMC service on 8/25/58 with Parris Island's Platoon 295, in South Carolina.
Thereafter, I was assigned to the Infantry Training Regiment [ITR], Camp Geiger, North Carolina followed by an immediate assignment to the FMF's "H" Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marines for a year. Then, in August of 59, I began a 30 month stint with the 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment. My first half of that 30 months of controlled input was spent with "F" Company, afterwhich I joined "G" Company for the Solant Amity Cruise and the remainder of my stint with the 6th Marines. But...I wasn't through with the infantry yet; nor it with me.
I was transferred to the 2nd of the 8th Marines again, this time to fill out the Battalion's need for a full compliment of cannon fodder for a six month "bruisen" in the Mediterranean; which was a far cry from our mostly R&R efforts together on Solant Amity I. Finally, I left LeJeune for a two month "walk-in-the-park" gig in Quantico, Virginia until discharged on 24Aug62.
Returning to the world, I tried my hand at a number of things until joining New York City's Transit Authority in 1973, from which I retired as a Motorman in 1995.
My wife Marge and I, in search of a new life style, then made the big leap from that of "citi-fied New Yawkers" to being "just plain mountain folk."
For sure, a lot of years have passed since I last and up-close saw the faces now arrayed on the Solant Amity website. Many had never really been lost to me but sat in the corners of my mind and would from time to time appear in my recollections of those really fine times and experiences of the Solant Cruise: the best six months I spent in the Corps. A time for wine, women and, if not careful beyond our years at the time, an occasional bout with NSU from "the strain of it all."
Drop me a line; my email address is: jjtek@q.net And a very BIG Semper Fi to you all.


John C. Thomson : the former 3rd Platoon Commander after leaving the Marine Corps in 1962 lived in Gulfport, Mississippi and died of cancer sometime between 1987 and 1992. More particlulars about both his life and his passing are being sought. Should you have any such information, PLEASE contact the website's webmaster .


To Return to Biographies for those with last names beginning with A-F

REUNIONS:


Charlie Wilson


Ken Kollai

Ed Shea


Ed Shea

Ron Smith

Charlie Wilson (2nd Platoon), Ken Kollai and Ed Shea of the 3rd Platoon raised their glasses in celebration of the Corp's birthday on 10 November 2005 during a luncheon together in Naples, Florida. None had seen the others since 1962! The luncheon and time since has gone by all too fast.
The biographies of Kollai & Shea can be found above. Charlie's is on the 2nd Platoon's page
.

Trevor Davies, Ed Shea and their "brides" had their first reunion on 10 August 2003, near Boston. It was here that Ed first acquired the reputation as a serial killer of lobsters.

It would be 2011 before they would again get together.

Ron and I first met in September 1959.
In August 2001, we reunited for the first time since '62. "Different" back in the day as today, Ron remains one of the more interesting and talented men I've met in my life. ALWAYS ready with an opinion, he's made a career out of something started on Graham County fifty years ago.


Don Carter & Trevor Davies


Don Carter


Trevor Davies

Ed Shea

 

 

 

 

SPACE AWAITS YOUR ENTRY

In '07, D & T learned they'd been living within 20 miles of each another for decades. Not long afterwards they began their "Arts & Crafts Project," the subject of an article in our newsletter of Decemeber 2007. "Click" on the photo to see the likely tallest and shortest members of the 3rd working together.

Donald Carter, Trevor Davies and Ed Shea of the 3rd Herd met in Plymouth, MA on 28 June 2011.

Once again, I remained overwhelmed with just how easy it was to capture the camaraderie of yesteryear. Everyone, including the wives, had something to say about how "strange" it seemed that men having not seen oneanother for 50 years could so quickly sound like they had been "bowling" only yesterday.

Return to Home page. View the biographies of the 1st Platoon; 2nd Platoon ; Weapons Platoon ; Headquarters and H&S Personnel. See Solant Amity Cruise or Santa Maria Incident related photographs. To see service and cruise related Anecdotes... both literal and photographic or a tribute to the Marines on the Hermitage.
Maybe you would like to read the Comments of Marines and Sailors visiting the site or an ever-expanding array of Links & Things. Or, perhaps you would just like to see some recent photos of the Corps' Parris Island Training Center.